Man buys, fills empty Pappy Van Winkle bottles with ‘foreign substance’ to resell them

(Junior Achievement of Kentuckiana)
Published: May. 24, 2023 at 9:50 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - California man, Sandeep Minhas, has been ordered to pay tens of thousands of dollars in restitution after buying empty bottles of Pappy Van Winkle Bourbon on eBay, filling them with something else and reselling them in the United Kingdom.

Minhas bought the bottles sometime between May 2018 and February 2019 and refilled them with a “foreign substance that was not the original liquid,” according to a pretrial diversion agreement. He then sealed the bottles to make them appear genuine and unopened.

He sent those bottles from his home in California to auction houses in the United Kingdom. The auction houses sold the bottles and sent the earnings back to him.

The pretrial diversion agreement states that Minhas was paid over $30,000 for the 10 packages he sent to three auctioneer companies in the UK.

The United States Attorney will not pursue further criminal prosecution after two years if Minhas abides by the court’s conditions, according to the agreement.

Minhas was ordered to refrain from violating any law for two years, agree to complete and truthful cooperation and pay restitution to the victims.

The agreement states that during the two-year time period, the United States Attorney can revoke or modify any condition, change the period of the pretrial diversion, discharge Minhas from the pretrial diversion and proceed with prosecution if he breaks the aforementioned conditions.